Thursday, June 05, 2003

A new story from the wonderful Haruki Murakami is always cause for celebration. "The Folklore Of Our times" is no exception, It can be found here in the latest issue of the New Yorker. Not sure how long the link will last though? Catch it while you can it's great.

After football on Monday evening, our discussion turned to subject of the changes at the Glastonbury Festival over the years. One thing however is constant , the thorny issue of the toilet facilities!

When first went, back in 1983, the torrential rain had turned the whole site into a quagmire, the area around the toilets was a huge muddy morass. If you could actually cope with standing in the enormous queue's before attempting the treacherous walk to your individual cubicle, the sight (and smell) that greeted you, was like looking into the bowels of hell itself. People would emerge ashen faced and often in their rush to leave the scene, they slipped and skidded their way to further muddy humiliation. It was gruesome.

The last time we went was in 1993. On this occasion the festival was blessed with sunny weather, however the downside of this was the amazing smell emanating from toilet zones. Talk about weapons of mass destruction, this was certainly set to stun levels, as the excess baggage from 100, 000 bodies fermented in the hot sun.

So we started to talking about potential ways round the problem. Abstinence was my choice in 1983 and 1993, however this is not always an option. A walk into the woods, is an option but as the festival goes on conditions underfoot can become very treacherous indeed and should you lose your balance it can get very messy. So we got to thinking about the famous dog walkers with their popper scoppers, when suddenly Marc had a brainwave. All you need is a large children's bucket, with a large number of plastic carrier bag. Simply place the bag in the bucket, fold around the edges to secure, assume the position, remove the bag, place in rubbish bin! Genius!! This can all be in the privacy of your tent. I fully expect to hear of someone selling "home toilet kits" at the festival this year.

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